The Application Two-Step

The Application Two-Step

The Application Two-Step

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The Application Two-Step

Here’s a common scenario that’s playing out on the Internet today: you spend hours surfing the Web and visiting job boards; you search through hundreds of job postings in their job databases; and finally, you find what you’ve been looking for. There, right in front of you, is an opening that matches your qualifications perfectly. So, what do you do? Send in your resume, right? Well, not exactly. If that’s all it took, a lot more people would be getting offers and starting out at new jobs.

In today’s Mad Hatter job market, you can’t get a job by applying for it. You have to do more. You have to apply not once, but twice in a process I call the Application Two-Step.

  • Step 1 is a test.
  • Step 2 is the answer.
  • Perform the first step, and you will be considered an applicant; perform the second, and you will be noticed. Perform both steps, and you will likely move to the head of the applicant line.

    Step 1: The Test

    A job posting is a test. Its purpose is to determine whether or not you paid attention in Mrs. Murphy’s kindergarten class. What was the first lesson you were taught there? That’s right: you must follow directions. So, a job posting is, first and foremost, a test to determine whether you can submit your application according to the employer’s instructions. It might tell you do to:

  • Cut and paste your resume into an online application form,
  • Cut and paste your resume into a regular, old e-mail message,
  • Send your resume as an attachment to an e-mail message, or
  • Send your resume to the employer by old fashioned postal mail.
  • Whatever the method that’s specified, the key to being considered a bona fide applicant is to do exactly as you are instructed. It doesn’t matter if it’s easier or more convenient for you to do something else. Step 1 is pass or fail; either you follow the employer’s directions and are thus worthy of consideration or you don’t and are considered a “graffiti applicant” and tossed into the reject pile.

    Step 2: The Answer

    If Step 1 enables you to pass the test; Step 2 provides the answer that will ace it. As soon as you have positioned yourself as a bona fide applicant, you must reposition your resume to make sure you get priority attention.

    Recruiters are inundated with applicant resumes these days, so it’s very hard for any single person-even one who is extremely qualified for an opening-to get noticed. To overcome that disadvantage, therefore, you must help your resume stand out. And, the best way to do that is by networking.

    You have plenty of resources at your disposal, including your connections on LinkedIn and other social media sites, your college or university alumni organization, and the discussion forum on the Web-site of your professional or trade association. Use every single one of them to find one (or both) of two kinds of contacts:

  • Employees of the organization whom you know
  • Employees whom you don’t know, but with whom you share an affinity (e.g., you have the same professional affiliation or a common alma mater)
  • Once you’ve made a connection, ask them to pass your resume along to the appropriate recruiter in their HR Department. If that happens-and you’ll be surprised at how willing most people are to help out-your resume will move from being just one more among the hundreds or thousands in the organization’s resume database to being one of a handful or less on the recruiter’s desktop. At that point, the odds are far, far greater that it and you will get the consideration you deserve.

    Applying for a job online, then, isn’t as simple as it might at first seem. In fact, the process is actually both the first assessment an employer will make of your capabilities as a prospective employee and the single best way to make sure that your resume gets looked at first by recruiters. And, the secret to success is to practice the Application Two-Step.

    Thanks for reading,

    Peter

    P.S. WEDDLE’s Newsletter grows only by word-of-mouth. So, please … tell a friend or colleague (or two) about the newsletter. We’d be very grateful, and they will be too.

    Job Security Doesn’t Work, Career Security Does

    These are tough times for everyone in the workplace.

    It doesn’t matter whether you have 2 or 32 years of employment experience, today’s world of work is a risk-filled, even threatening place. And it is also the place where you spend one-third or more of your day.

    So what should you do? Give yourself “career security”-security you can count on even in the toughest of times.

    And the best source of career security is Peter Weddle’s book, Work Strong: Your Personal Career Fitness System.

  • If you’re in transition, it will resuscitate your career even as you hunt for a new job.
  • If you’re currently employed, it will help you strengthen and protect your career for whatever lies ahead.
  • Click here to get a 24% discount on the book at Amazon.com!

    Or, if you’d like A FREE WORK STRONG WRISTBAND, order the book directly from WEDDLE’s by calling 203.964.1888 or clicking here.

    Don’t delay. Give yourself the power and promise of career security. Get Work Strong right away!

    Our Featured Books

    The Best Guides to the Best Job Boards Period

  • WEDDLE’s 2009/10 Guide to Employment Sites on the Internet. This Gold Standard of guides to the Web’s 100,000+ job boards and career portals has been completely updated so you can find the best sites for you and your career.
  • WEDDLE’s 2009/10 Guide to Association Web Sites. Employers often post their best jobs at the Web-sites of local, state, regional or national professional associations. This one-of-a-kind Guide enables you to determine which of those associations have the job search resources you need to connect with those employers.
  • How can you get these amazing resources? Click here to reach our online bookstore or call 203.964.1888 to order your copies of these truly unique job search guides.

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    To Find the Right Job, Find the Real You First

    If you’re searching for more meaning in your career, if you want the time you spend on-the-job to be more fulfilling and rewarding for you, then read Peter Weddle’s new book Recognizing Richard Rabbit. Amazon described it as “a gentle way to figure out your dreams.”

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    Our Featured Employment Web Site

    Site Spotlite … from the pages of WEDDLE’s 2009/10 Guide to Employment Sites on the Internet.

    There are 50,000 job boards and career portals now in operation in North America and an equal number operating elsewhere around the world. The key to a successful online job search, therefore, is knowing where to find and how to select the best sites for your specific employment objective. WEDDLE’s 2009/10 Guide profiles The Top 100 employment sites on the Web today and provides The Best & the Rest, a listing of over 10,000 such sites worldwide. It’s all of the information you need to determine which job boards will deliver the best opportunities for you. For example:

    EHSCareers.com

    http://www.ehscareers.com

    Post full time jobs: Yes

    Post part time, contract or consulting jobs: Yes-All

    Distribution of jobs: International

    Number of jobs: 500+

    Salary levels of jobs: $151-200K/year, $201-250K/year

    Offer a job agent: Yes

    Resume database: Yes

    How long are resumes stored: 6 months

    Restrictions on who can post: Those registered for jobs in the environmental, occupational health and safety fields

    Other services for job seekers: Career information, Links to other sites with career information

    Member, International Association of Employment Web Sites: Yes

    Job Security Doesn’t Work, Career Security Does

    These are tough times for everyone in the workplace.

    It doesn’t matter whether you have 2 or 32 years of employment experience, today’s world of work is a risk-filled, even threatening place. And it is also the place where you spend one-third or more of your day.

    So what should you do? Give yourself “career security”-security you can count on even in the toughest of times.

    And the best source of career security is Peter Weddle’s book, Work Strong: Your Personal Career Fitness System.

  • If you’re in transition, it will resuscitate your career even as you hunt for a new job.
  • If you’re currently employed, it will help you strengthen and protect your career for whatever lies ahead.
  • Click here to get a 24% discount on the book at Amazon.com!

    Or, if you’d like A FREE WORK STRONG WRISTBAND, order the book directly from WEDDLE’s by calling 203.964.1888 or clicking here.

    Don’t delay. Give yourself the power and promise of career security. Get Work Strong right away!